Student Design Award 2020 logo

Submissions for the 2021 Award are now closed

Your chance to win £1,000 in prize money as well as a work placement in the Penguin Random House Design Studios*

The Penguin Student Design Award, now in its 15th year, aims to discover and nurture the next generation of design and illustration talent.

Each year we give you the opportunity to experience real cover design briefs first-hand across a choice of non-fiction, fiction and children’s titles. Three emerging creatives then win £1,000 in prize money as well as a work placement* at Penguin Random House UK.

To enter, select the category you would like to submit an entry for, read the brief and get designing!

*The provision of a work placement prize shall be subject to any corporate policies, government guidelines, laws or other recommendations issued or in force at the time as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic or otherwise.

The details

The competition is open to anyone studying on a Further Education or Higher Education course – part time or full time, in any subject and at any level at the time of the deadline for entries (Tuesday 23 March 2021).

Entrants must be aged 18 or over by 1 July 2021. The competition is not open to graphic design professionals. Students may enter a maximum of one design in each of the three categories. See the Terms and Conditions for full details of entry requirements.

This year our three briefs were:

Student Design Award 2021 categories

Key dates

Form open for entries – Wednesday 2 December 2020

*Closing date for entries – 14.00 GMT on Tuesday 23 March 2021

Shortlist announcement – Wednesday 28 April 2021

Closing date for shortlisted student’s support materials – Wednesday 12 May 2021

Winners announced – June 2021

*We recognise that the ongoing restrictions around the Covid-19 pandemic brings many challenges to students around the world including, for many, to their studying conditions. Therefore, we are pleased to announce an extension of the deadline date for the submission of entries to 14:00 GMT on Tuesday 23 March. Please note that entries submitted after this date will not be accepted for any reason. We strongly advise that you upload your entry ahead of this date in order to allow time should you encounter any technical difficulties.

A letter from Tom Weldon, Penguin Random House CEO

'Standout cover design is an integral part of the success of a book and Penguin Random House has created thousands of iconic book covers throughout the years. The vital role of illustrators and designers in the production of some of the world's best-loved adult and children's books has created and defined the identity of our UK publishing lists.

We value creativity and design incredibly highly, and started the Penguin Random House Student Design Award fifteen years ago to encourage the next generation of designers to use their amazing talents to help us tell our authors' stories.

I am always impressed with the quality of submissions and I look forward to seeing what this year’s talent has to offer.'  

Pattern design in top banner is by previous Student Design Award winners Harry WoodgateSian McKeeverToby Clarke and Bethany Rush.

Get creative inspiration from the Student Design Award

Get inspired with blogs from junior designers

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